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This excerpt was cross-posted from the Raging Chicken Press and talks about how Ed Rendell is making money through privatization deals in PA and shilling for CEOs on the "Fix the Debt" campaign.

Earlier this week, Governor Corbett once again laid down the gauntlet for next year’s budget stating that raising revenue  is off the table, which means more privatization schemes and more gutting of public education. But behind the scenes, no one is talking about the banking firm that is handling the consulting work for Governor Corbett’s privatization attempts.  The link between Governor Corbett and Greenhill and Company – the bank responsible for profiting from consulting work for the state – is former Pennsylvania Governor, Ed Rendell. The former governor’s corporate shilling as a consultant – which is just a pretty name for a “lobbyist” – doesn’t end with privatizing state-owned entities, it has taken a national level with the “Fix the Debt Campaign” – which comprises of over 100 CEO’s who are lobbying for more government contracts, more tax cuts and entitlement austerity as a means to settle the “Fiscal Cliff” talks.

Ed Rendell and Greenhill and Co.

Ed Rendell’s relationship with Greenhill and Co. – a Chicago based private equity bank – dates back to 2008 when Rendell hired Morgan Stanley to broker a $12.8 billion deal to privatize the Pennsylvania Turnpike.  The effort ultimately failed to pass the Pennsylvania Assembly.  The banker that Morgan Stanley assigned to the job was Robert Collins,  a current banker for Greenhill and Co., and thus Governor Rendell’s future job as a “government consultant” for the firm was set in stone.

Other than acting as a contemporary for the Natural Gas Industry since 2010, two of Tom Corbett’s main policy agendas are imposing a moratorium on increasing tax revenues for Pennsylvania’s wealthiest coupled with the wholesale destruction of state-owned entities.  These two policy agendas have opened up a privatization vacuum where some of the country’s best run state institutions are open for privatization.  In late 2011, Governor Corbett hired Greenhill and Co. as a consulting partner to draw up privatization plans.  A few months later, Greenhill and Company received a $4 million dollar contract for the privatization of the Pennsylvania Lottery System, but the contract was broken down into a $1 million dollar up front cost with a $3 million contract if the state was to go through with the plans to privatize the system.  But the company Rendell “consults” – or lobbies – for may also have some money interests in the destruction that Hurricane Sandy reaped across New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.  According to David Dayen of Firedog Lake, Greenhill and Co. is heavily supportive of “P-3’s” – or private-public partnerships, just another fancy term for privatization.  The article quotes the Philadelphia Inquirer that Sandy hit “just in time” for Rendell’s new firm, but the My FDL writer makes the correct assumption that governors such as Corbett, Cuomo and Christie may embrace these “P-3’s” which would mean more money for Greenhill and Co.

Ed Rendell and the “Fix the Debt” Campaign

Rendell’s lobbying efforts doesn’t stop on a state or regional level, he has taken his pro-austerity shilling efforts to the airwaves as a regular guest on MSNBC’s Morning Joe or CNBC’s Squawk Box.  The group he is lobbying with gained prominent notoriety when Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein went on a crusade against Social Security, Medicare, Medicade, and the expiration of the George Bush Tax Cuts.  The prick claimed that members of the working class only work for 25 years and want 30 years entitlement benefits, and then later had the audacity to compare the expiration of the tax cuts to World War II....

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Comment Preferences

  •  i figured his boundless zeal for cutting Medicare (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    salmo, Gary Norton, KayCeSF

    meant someone had purchased him.  Thanks for figuring it out.  He's been shilling on Hardball too.

    •  Corbett (0+ / 0-)

      seems to have given up on privatizing the liquor stores now, and is going after the Lottery instead.

      95% of all life forms that once existed on earth are now extinct. It is only a matter of time until the Republicans follow suit.

      by PRRedlin on Wed Dec 05, 2012 at 08:41:54 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I see him all over MSNBC (0+ / 0-)

      MSNBC uses him all over its lineup.  I can see why he and Harold Ford are favorite guests on Joe Scarborough's show, and I am not surprised to see him with Tweety.  Do the producers for the rest of that network's lineup book guests individually, or does the network do multiple bookings and hand them off to their various shows?  If the later, I understand but disapprove.  If the former, WTF?  Presumably their evening lineup producers know who and what Rendell is, and the fact that he appears without viewers being told a reasonably complete description of his current role(s) seems like a telling omission.  Rendell is identified as a Democrat, former Governor, and "analyist."  No mention is made of his other current interests that pose significant conflicts with what most people would consider the public interest.  There is a lot of criticism of Fox News for this sort of thing.  It seems like MSNBC ought to be held to the same rules.

  •  Thanks for the info (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

       Democrats like Rendell are exactly what Kos meant about electing "more and better Democrats". I'll admit that Rendell can be fun to watch when he plays the political analyst, but when he talks about policy all I see is a corporate lackey.    

  •  Gov Rendell was a big disappointment to PA progres (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    salmo, 2laneIA, Gary Norton

    progressives.  His 8 year record accomplished almost no reform to the cesspool that is Harrisburg.  He "played" the LBGT community, asking for their votes and not once trying to pass a state non-discrimination bill.   He doled out a few low level appointments to some gays who were in his pocket for years.  He did not do much for the wider community.  He has earned his nickname Fast Eddie.

    •  Rendell was horrible for Unions too (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      managers received almost no pay increase over his 8 years, and the pension funds were neglected to be financed under his control.  It really is no wonder PA voted republican for Gov.

      Now that Corbett is in though, PA is sick of both parties.  More  better democrats is what is needed.

      95% of all life forms that once existed on earth are now extinct. It is only a matter of time until the Republicans follow suit.

      by PRRedlin on Wed Dec 05, 2012 at 08:41:23 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  MSNBC (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greenbell, Gary Norton, salmo

    The network gives him a platform to spout his benefit-cutting BS almost every day.  I would love to see a Twitter campaign or something similar to bombard them with objections every times he appears.

    •  Poor Tweety is so worried about his portfolio (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Gary Norton, salmo

      he can hardly stand it.  Must cut Medicare now!  My stocks may tank!  -- I mean WHERE does he think people are going to put their money?  They've already doubled the price of Iowa farmland because they don't want to invest elsewhere.

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